PA exhumes chapter over Kalu’s political relevance
By Odimegwu Onwumere
Nigerians are beginning to see that Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu was one governor who saw rule as might, not might as rule. This is captured in an unreserved apology (Friday March 09, 2012) by the National Chairman of the Progressive Peoples Alliance (PPA), Chief Sam Nkire, as was reported in many of our dailies. “PPA chairman begs Kalu not to quit party, politics” was how many of the newspapers captioned the unbiased apology. Nkire said that it would be a big loss to PPA, which he, Kalu raised to reckoning, if the latter continues to stay aloof from active politics.
With the apology, Nkire could be regarded as a foresighted person owing to the political oblivion the PPA was already heading to (without Kalu?). The party and its loquacious factional chairman in Abia State on the 16th February, 2012, disrespected the most revered Dr. Kalu when the former unwittingly announced that certain persons known to be connected to the political dude (Kalu) by blood were suspended by the PPA, for what was described as ‘Anti-Party activities’. The party said that their suspension came on the hills of observation that those suspended were trying to put the party in disarray.
But with the decision of the national body of the party in begging Kalu is a pointer that the factional chairman of the party in Abia State who made the announcement of the suspension lacked hierarchical morality since he refused to get order from the national body before playing to the gallery for people to laugh at him. With that shamefaced act, he was supposed to have been cooling his heels in the gulag by now after suspension also must have been meted out to him.
How can somebody who called himself a party chairman in a state like the Abia not be able to coordinate the party very well? His lack of political dexterity has culminated into thugs storming PPA’s meetings and kidnapping some party faithful and inflicting injuries on others and destroying valuable property. What a shame! This is a party that refused to see the good Kalu meant in Abia State and in Nigeria, than to blackmail him. Whereas even the police perhaps had seen PPA as unfit without Kalu, hence they withdrew their service to secure the meeting and the alleged thugs struck..
Juxtaposing to that, what could not happen when Dr. Kalu was governor of Abia State are happening in the state due to the shenanigan politics the recent administration has learnt to play better. Governor Theodore Orji of Abia State was given an unbreakable date with stones and sachet water and other items at the Aba Township Stadium during the lying in state of late Dim Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu by the mammoth crowd of residents, but his political aides reposed to lying that he was booed and pelted by his political opponents. Lie! Pure lie!
From observation, he was booed and pelted by the residents because of his lack of efficiency in governance. Who could boo or pelt Dr. Kalu if he is acknowledging cheers from the people? It is only Theodore Orji who could record that negative feat! The pelting development was a substantiation of the governor’s diminishing reputation all over Abia State, showing that Dr. Kalu still stands tall in popularity, not only in Abia State, but in the world at large.
The world at large will ever vouch for Kalu that he never involved himself with political battles till date as Theordore Orji has involved himself in many political battles since he assumed the office of governor. Orji became egotistical! He is even in political battles with his predecessor, Kalu, but the later is not even giving any notice of fighting. Kalu’s political maturity is a case study for those studying political science.
The plea that Kalu should withdraw his decision to quit politics and the party by the national body of the PPA goes a long way to show how relevant he is. The party, like many people this writer have approached to air their view of Kalu, say that it is not better that Kalu leads from behind but in the front because he is a victory majority of the people that know him always celebrate and he is a nice thing that has occurred in the Nigerian political landscape.
Kalu took the frontline when there was danger in the ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo anti-Igbo politics. And the people always appreciate Kalu beyond that period for not seeing leadership as something that must be gotten by muscles, but getting along with people. Is Governor Orji learning?
It is important that those who are close to Dr Kalu tell him that he cannot afford to abandon Ndigbo at this critical point in time when Ndigbo are in dearth of a leader like Ojukwu who loved Ndigbo from the depth of his heart. While he may be focusing on his Orji Uzor Kalu Foundation, it is time he rethinks and comes back to active politics. His mammoth followers before and after he founded PPA in July 2006 and vied for Presidency in 2007 under the platform, are still loyal to him even though he decides tomorrow not to move with the PPA again.
Kalu is still one hundred percent relevant in the Nigerian politics. Nkire has seen this and has smashed the PPA’s Abia State chapter over its ostensibly suspension of Kalu, saying that the state chapter of the party committed such a gaffe at a time that the national leadership was petitioning to Kalu to repeal his decision to quit. Since the leadership of the party has been making appeals to Kalu to change his mind and recommence active participation in the affairs of the party, it is evident that many more people even outside the party will beg Kalu very soon to forgive them especially now that the Nigerian electorates are centering their mindset on popularity and not on those who use armoured tanks and soldiers to win elections. Yes, more people will beg Kalu, Nkire just opened the folder.
Odimegwu Onwumere writes from Rivers State.